As I said before in my previous post (click here to read it) the best way to improve your English listening is through full immersion in an English speaking country. However, if you are not able to travel to an English speaking country to improve your listening through full immersion, the next best thing is to surround yourself with real life English in your own home or country. Here are some techniques to improve your English at home.
- English Practice Online. You can practice listening to an online coach or teacher. It is best if this online coach or teacher is a native English speaker.
- Find Native English Speakers in Your Town. You can also hang out at* (*spend time at) events in your town or city where you will find native English speakers. Do a search for “expats in _______ (name of your town)” on google, in English, and you will likely find an online forum where you can find information on events that expats may attend. Meetup.com and Couchsurfing.com are online communities that organize events in many cities where you can meet native English speakers.
- TV/Movie Method (Read Closely for How) Another way that you can improve your listening in a real life context in your own home and country is to watch English movies and TV series that show a real life situation and where there is a lot of dialogue* (*speaking between people in a movie or TV show). Science Fiction or action movies with very little speaking may not be the best choice to improve real life listening! To improve your English listening with this method, do this: a) Choose a part of a film or movie that you like or that shows a real life situation. b) Watch it 3 times. c) The first time you watch it, watch it with no subtitles to focus your listening. Don’t worry if you don’t understand much the first time you listen. d)The second time you watch it, watch it slowly, with English subtitles. Pause the part of the movie or TV show to write down and learn any new vocabulary. e)Rewind and listen to the new vocabulary again. f)The third time you watch it, watch it again at normal speed with no subtitles. You will be impressed with your listening improvement!
- Music for Listening. We all love music, and listening to music in English can be a great way to improve your listening at home. There are also great sites like lyricstraining.com to help you practice your listening through music.
- My Pinterest English Listening Board. I have put links to some good websites to practice your English listening – take a look!